I had a nice early morning bike ride today with some bike buddies, then stopped at the house to grab my bag, switch bikes (not sure why), then ride to work. I’m normally a pretty early morning rider, frequently getting to work before 7am. Today, I was riding through Chicago’s Old Town neighborhood right around 8am. Lots of cars. Lots of bikes.
My gripe today is with the people on the bikes. Start acting like grown-ups. I don’t care if you run every red light and stop sign as long as you a) don’t take the right-of-way from someone, and b) pay attention to what bikes ahead of you are doing.
Right of Way
If you get to a four-way stop or a red light and nobody is there, I won’t quibble with you blowing through the intersection. If there’s a kid trying to cross the street to get to school, or if there are cars with the right-of-way, you damn well better stop. If the way I saw people riding this morning is any indication, I think there are a lot of lawyers specializing in drawing up wills who should be advertising into the cycling community.
Bikes Stopped Ahead of You
For crying out loud, people! If another bike has seen fit to stop at an intersection or crosswalk, they probably did it for a good reason! Maybe you won’t be happy until you cream some kid on his way to school? Think of a bike stopped ahead of you as a second set of eyes (and a second brain, because obviously many of you aren’t using the one you’ve got). Listen to what he’s saying by stopping.
No wonder drivers hate us.